Rick Picard walked curiously into the company’s sales meeting. His company had hired a consultant to help sales reps increase their revenues. A top performer and no stranger to seven-figure annual sales, Picard was not required to go. But he went anyway. After the meeting, Picard knew his life was going to change.
A Webster, MA, native, Picard began his career doing plumbing repairs and installations after he completed trade school. Picard worked hard to support his wife, Monika, and their four daughters, Ashley, Austin, Gabrielle and Kaitlin. The family moved to Coventry, RI more than 10 years ago.
In 2003, he had the opportunity to join Lincoln, RI,-based Gem Plumbing & Heating’s residential service team.
For six years, Picard has been a successful sales manager at Gem. From 2003 to 2005, Picard estimates that he was selling as much as $2 million annually, which is more than three times the industry average.
From Good To Great
But in 2005, Picard met his future life coach and found even greater success.
As part of a sales initiative, the management team at Gem hired a consultant, Joe Crisara, who had been generating buzz in the plumbing and heating industry.
Crisara flew out to Rhode Island from his home in Los Angeles, CA, to begin working with the team at Gem. Picard distinctly recalls having the right to “pass” on attending. After all, Picard reasoned, he really was a hot-shot salesman, and what could this consultant teach him?
“The Ring Of Truth”
“If a person want to perform at his best possible level, he never really stops looking at how to become better, how to get that critical edge,” says Picard. “Sure, I had some tremendous success, certainly better than the average salesperson, but I also knew that you might learn something new that will make an impact.”
So he went to hear Joe Crisara.
Picard, who has been to more than a dozen sales trainings, was immediately convinced that Crisara had something to offer.
“When I heard Joe talk, it had a ring of truth,” Picard says.” When I heard him explaining there was a better way to do this, I could tell this was someone who really knew what he was talking about,” says Picard.
Crisara began working intensively with the company. He accompanied the contractors, including Picard this time, during their sales and service calls. Crisara identified individual habits, patterns and pitfalls. He trained the contractors on his proven sales method and helped each person master the technique.
“When I used to go to a sales call, I had my own little system and didn’t really listen to the customer,” says Picard. “What Joe’s system does is allow me to be a student of the customer. I was able to have the customer tell me needs, wants and interests, and I was able to modify my solutions to tailor them,” says Picard.
A Dramatic Improvement
Since working with Crisara, Picard started spending more time listening to customers and offering more premium products. And, yes, the results were dramatic. His sales have over doubled from $2 million to $5 million annually with higher profit margins and have remained steady.
Other sales and service representatives have experienced similar results.
Taze Picard, Rick’s brother, also works at Gem Plumbing & Heating. Since working with Crisara, Taze’s sales have more than tripled from $600,000 to more than $2 million annually.
“Joe fine-tunes us,” is how Picard describes what occurs. “You can teach someone the best habits, but by staying in constant contact with a coach, he keeps you focused on where you are going to be. Joe is a master communicator,” says Picard.
The Rewards Are Obvious
Since doubling his sales, Picard’s income too has doubled. He said working with Crisara has improved his home life and put him in a better position to support his wife and daughters. Picard adds that his family is also grateful to Crisara.
“Joe is a life changer for me. Because of him, I can take better care of my family,” says Picard.
The two have formed a friendship and meet several times each month. Picard has attended Crisara’s “Total Immersion Seminar” twice and describes Crisara as a master communicator, life coach and friend.
“One of the best things about Joe is he is sincere and compassionate,” Picard says.” It brings him joy to see others around him succeed. The happiest moment for him is seeing someone he’s helped do better.”
It’s been four years since the fateful meeting that changed Picard’s life. When asked if he will continue to work with Crisara, his answer is simple: “As long as he’ll have me.”